Library sends police officer to collect overdue books… from a five-year-old girl

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A five-year-old girl was left in tears after police visited her home - to collect her overdue library books.

Hailey Benoit was left scared and believing she would be arrested after being questioned about two books which were due for return to Charlton Public Library, in Massachusetts, several months before.

Her mother Shannon said: 'I thought it was way overboard. I closed my door, I looked at my daughter and she started crying.'

The drama began when local police Sergeant Dan Down knocked on the door to chase up the errant books. It was part of a blitz on $4,000 worth of unpaid fines.

The books were found and returned, but Mrs Benoit said sending the police around was like 'pounding a ten penny nail with a sledge hammer'.

Warning: Charlton Public Library decided to crack down on $4,000 worth of unpaid fines by sending police around to people's homes


She also said they have never received any warnings the misplaced books were wanted back.

And even Sgt Dowd admitted he felt uneasy with his mission.

He said: 'Nobody wanted to, on this end, get involved in it. But the library contacted us, and the chief delegated, and apparently I was one of the low men on the totem pole.'

Regardless of whether the action was too heavy-handed, Massachusetts state law does state that the non-return of library books is a crime.

Charlton Police said they thought a friendly reminder might make a better impression, and get better results, than a cold summons to court.

i just realized i have book not returned for over 10 years......

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Treat her like an adult. jk
People can be so insensitive these days.


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I'd think it was pretty cool. Me and my friends got told off by the police when we were 10 for pulling moonies at a retirement home, we didn't mind chatting to them (the police not the OAP's ..)


She knew what she was getting into. Little brat. It starts with overdue library books and before you know it shes cutting in line at lunch and then... who knows what?


Please Watch/Share this video so it gets shown in Hollywood.

Is this a good thread for me to mention the time I took a 5 year old kid to jail for back-talking his parents (with their consent)? I put handcuffs on him, put him in the back of my patrol car, and took him to a holding cell. After about ten minutes, I took him back home. He cried like a baby.

Took pics and sent them to my best friend (d11Saxon on my Xbox friends list), too! We laughed our asses off!
Man, we were assholes.

Twitter: @d21lewis  --I'll add you if you add me!!

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Very good,

Right now it's books, soon she'll be thieving tv's and cars, catch em early is my motto :-p

The article makes it seem so horrible, it was $4000 worth of fines, it was a crime

I hate irresponsible people >_>

What? No pepperspray? What is this?! She got of easy..


Face the future.. Gamecenter ID: nikkom_nl (oh no he didn't!!) 

Well, if the mother actually made sure her 5 year old kept up with her responsibility instead of dismissing it then this would not happen. People take this casual attitude when checking out books and feel they do not need to own up to their responsibility. This was not just a lesson for the child it also was a lesson for the parent.

Isnt it the mothers responsibility and fault? Dont see the problem here.

@miz1q2w3e: the 4000 dollars was the total fees, not just for the girl.

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